Mar 26, 2008


Musings on my Trident spearmint gum:
  1. The label proudly declares "Now with Xylitol!" Now perhaps I'm a moron, but I definitely had to look up what the heck xylitol was in order to know why that was so great. It sounds toxic. I hate advertising like that, because you know that the average gum consumer isn't going to know what the heck it is, but they'll figure that since they have it written on the label, "it must be something good, so I should buy that". It's like when shampoos say "pH-balanced" on the label. All it means is that the shampoo isn't going to eat away your scalp and has a normal pH. Every shampoo is pH-balanced or nobody would use it, it's not something to be way proud of. But it sounds impressive. I hate that.
  2. I know I won't be able to adequately describe why this is the case, but the new EZ-Close-Pack was really difficult to figure out. Buy a package of Trident gum and you'll see what I mean.
In other news:
  1. I finally got around to officially changing my name to my married name on Monday. It feels good. Plus now I can set up direct deposit again (my bank account is in my married name, but my work won't write me a check to that name without documentation), which is so much better than the usual method of having a large check in my purse for days doing no good while the bank account dips dangerously low and then eventually giving in and taking the hour to walk to the bank during lunch.
  2. We did a personality-type quiz in our department and then had a discussion about what each personality can contribute to the team in a meeting yesterday. Apparently I'm INFP. After reading the profile for this personality-type, I was like "Yep, that's definitely me," but I sometimes wonder if these sorts of things are really no more than a step above Horoscopes. Everyone has aspects of each personality-type in them, and the descriptions are all vague enough that you see yourself in whatever you end up with. Because when I read a profile of a Scorpio, I sit there and think "Yep, that's definitely me," as well.

Mar 16, 2008

Cutting It Out of My Vocabulary

I had a thought today whilst playing Wii Golf that I'm surprised I haven't had before. It will change my life, in it's own small way, and I am forever a different person. The thought is this: "Subpar" is a really stupid word. I've used it many times to describe restaurants, albums, coworkers, etc. But really, in the game of golf (which I believe is the origin of the word "par", though I could be completely wrong on that) isn't it a good thing to be below par?

I thought for a moment that using my own version, "surpar", would be a good idea, but a) it would get weird looks, and b) it sounds like a good thing even though it should be a bad thing.

Last thought on the word "subpar" before I erase it from my mind: is it actually it's own word? My spellcheck tells me it should be "sub par", but after some quick research, it's written as "subpar" on several reputable sites. A google battle shows that "subpar" gets 3 million-something hits and "sub par" gets 2 million-something hits, so maybe both are correct?

Mar 12, 2008

High-Low to Mexico

Another rant about how dumb some people are:

The radio station we have been listening to lately in the office has had this contest going called "High-Low to Mexico". The hosts have a jar of Swedish fish and people call in and guess how many are in there. The radio host will then say if the guess is too high or too low so the field would be narrowed down and eventually someone will guess the exact amount in there and win an exotic fishing trip in La Paz, Mexico. The guesses are posted on the station's website, so you don't have to listen to the station 24/7 to get the correct answer.

Being the person that I am (easily distracted from work and loving number games), I've followed this game religiously. Whenever a new guess is made, I'll say quietly to myself, "The odds of winning are now 1:183. If I were guessing, I'd pick the exact middle one which would now be 1430 (rounded to the nearest whole even number), because that'll cut the odds in half for next time."

You may ask why I would bother cutting the odds in half just so it would be easier for whoever guesses after me (I assume this because two of my coworkers asked me this). Three reasons: 1) There would be a slight chance that I would be caller #93 again and I'd be improving the odds for myself at that point, 2) I can't stand a lack of efficiency in nearly anything, and 3) If you have a 1:183 chance of getting it no matter what you pick, you might as well help out the next guy...then it's a trip to Mexico won for humanity, teamwork, charity, the American way...yeah, they didn't buy it either.

Unfortunately, most people apparently don't think like I do about this game. This is the actual guess tally from the station's website (aka What's wrong with this picture?):


Yes, a full third of the guesses to-date are outside of the already-set parameters. And now a conversation heard this morning:

Radio Personality: Are you ready to play High-Low to Mexico?

Listener: Yeah!

R: Have you been keeping track of the guesses so far on our website? (translation: Please don't be another one of those that doesn't get us any closer; I'm getting tired of this.
It's depressing to be finding out this way how low the intelligence level of my listeners is.)

L: Not really, I heard a couple of the guesses yesterday...

R: Well, listen here, I like you, you sound nice and chipper this morning (translation: I can't handle another of these), so I'm going to give you a hint. So far, we've narrowed down the guesses to something between 1339 and 1552.

L: Oh really? Okay, well my guess is...1301.

Did I mention this was a country music station?

Mar 9, 2008

I like girls that wear Abercrombie and Fitch...

This post started many moons ago. I was riding home from a Collective Soul concert in Salt Lake with Trevor and Trevor's friend Palmer and Palmer's wife Kevan, when we had a conversation that went something like

Trevor: I know far more about fashion that I ever thought I would being with Andrea.

Kevan: Oh, well let me quiz you! Do you know who Oscar de la Renta is?

T: Yes, he's a designer. It's a name I've heard numerous times.

K: Do you know who Stacy London is?

T: Ummm....

Andrea: Oh, come on, Trev, we watched this show yesterday.

T: Oh, she's on some show on Style Network or something.

K: Close enough. She's a host of TLC's What Not To Wear. And now the most important question, have you heard of Juicy Couture?

A (mumbling to myself): sucks.

T: Socks? Mumble louder, Andrea.

A: Oh, I didn't say anything.

T: Yes you did.

A: I just said Juicy Couture sucks.

A palpable tension fills the vehicle. Kevan starts rattling to Palmer something about a Juicy Couture dress that she almost bought but didn't or something like that, and the guys quickly turn to a new topic. Kevan and I will never be friendly from this point on.

Ever since then, I occasionally think back on this conversation and compose the speech that I wish I hadn't been restrained by society from giving. So, as it has been boiling up in me for some time, it has become a blog post. An essay if you will.

Why Juicy Couture and Similar Clothing Companies Should Be Destroyed and Anyone Who Wears Their Products Past the Age of Accountability Should Go Down, Too, Preferably Taking Their Ugly Little Dogs That They Bought $3000 Doggie Hair Extensions For With Them

One day I was speaking to a married male friend of mine and he mentioned that his wife really wanted a Juicy Couture terry tracksuit for Christmas. He told her if she was good she could get one. This was before he did his research and found that what she wanted was $180. "For lounge around clothes? I couldn't believe it!" I agreed with him that it was ridiculous, but let him know that his wife would not be happy with the less expensive brand of tracksuit he was considering because to the person who wears Juicy, it's the brand that matters and not the actual clothing.

Don't get me wrong, I have no problem whatsoever with expensive clothing. Nor am I one of those people who jealously criticizes people for spending on over-priced things just because I don't have the means to do so myself. What I do have a problem with is clothing that is expensive because it has an "in" brand name pasted across it. Expensive clothes should show by things like cut and fabric quality. Any clothing that requires a prominent brand name pasted on it to let you know it is expensive is not only wasteful, but also sends the message: "I have money but not enough style sense to look sophisticated, so instead I let you know by writing it on myself."

Also, there is nothing trashier than having "Juicy" pasted across your butt. This is trailer park clothing. Some people may say, "But look at how much of young Hollywood is wearing this tracksuit! How could it be trashy?" My response is simple: anyone who takes their fashion cues from Paris Hilton and thinks it's okay because she's rich, after all, should not be allowed to shop for themselves. Within pricey clothing realms and within cheap clothing realms, there is a lot of good and a lot of bad. Because something is expensive, it is not automatically tasteful.

Abercrombie and Fitch is the Juicy Couture of middle-class high school. Now that I'm out of that stage and into a completely different clothing world, Abercrombie clothing is not as outrageously-priced as it once seemed. However, look at their quality: obviously cheaply-manufactured. It's never worth it to shop there. Especially since it's near impossible to find something that doesn't proclaim loudly where you bought it and that's just embarrassing.

Within higher fashion realms, there is far more disgustingly prominent branding going on. Aside from being generally rather ugly things, the Luis Vuitton handbag is a tragedy not because the average one costs over $1000, but because people will happily pay over $1000 simply so people can see them toting a bag with the distinctive LV print on it. The worst part is, unless they live in a very wealthy area where the bag isn't going to be a big deal anyway, people will assume it's a fake, as the majority of the purses in this world with the LV print on them are.

And now a picture I came across whilst writing this and thought was funny (I'm pretty sure it's fake, but I honestly wouldn't be surprised if there are obsessed-with-appearing-wealth women out there who would love so much to have these):

Mar 6, 2008

That's my familia for you,

I just received this email from my mother and had to share it because it's so awesome:

Thomas was at the white board last night when he proudly announced, "I made a letter!" Dad and I quickly and proudly went over to see our son's first letter ever written by himself. Guess what it was? The symbol for pi! We haven't stopped laughing.
Love, mom

Mar 4, 2008

Getting Old

The other day Trevor, Trapper and I were sitting around talking, as we often do, when suddenly we came to the realization that we were having an in-depth conversation about car loans. And we all cared a lot about the conversation. At this moment, we knew we were old.

Today when I came to my desk after lunch, I became quite excited when I discovered that HR had given me a large stack of papers explaining my insurance policy options. I've been counting down the days when I'll be eligible for health insurance through the company. I realized again: I am old.

Old people talk about their mortgages. I talk about fashion trends. Old people talk about tax deductions. I talk about rock music. Old people talk about the pros and cons of buying land. I talk about celebrities' lives and play video games and support radical political candidates and have lots of sex and watch scary movies and play outrageous pranks on people, I should get that gas bill paid and look into ways to reduce the amount we use next month. And it's over.

I never expected to get old. I didn't want it to happen. It looks so boring. Though, of course, I'm actually simply growing into a new stage of old. I remember thinking you reach old at the point when you start watching the news and liking it, but then I started liking it at sixteen and decided I was still definitely not old.

Let's just hope that I never reach the stage of old that means me and my friends just sit around and talk about our medical problems.

Mar 2, 2008

I have the best husband ever.

A tale:

The other day I made a rather unfortunate pot roast. I'm generally a decent cook, but this roast was not decent. Being an emotional wreck, as women are occasionally, I started crying when we began eating it. "We don't even have juice or anything good to go with this," I moaned. Trevor held me then said, "Put me in my chair," and sped out the door. He came back some time later with a bag full of Zupa's (I mentioned that I wanted Zupa's days before this incident and apparently he remembered this) and some juice he had picked up at the grocery store. He remembered what my favorite soup was (tomato basil mixed with Wisconsin's to die for) and constructed a salad with all of my favorite things in it all by himself. Mind you, Zupa's is not super close to my house.

End of tale.